Kenneth Darter

Writing, Music, and Life

The Pancake Mushroom

There’s  a mushroom in my yard that really looks like a pancake.  I realize that up close it looks like a mushroom, but trust me, when you walk by it and see it out of the corner of your eye, it looks just like a pancake lying on the ground by a tree.

This made me think about a goblin leaving a pancake under a tree to catch children.  My children would certainly go for it; they love pancakes although they might go inside to get the syrup before they tried to eat it.  In fact, I was a bit worried when I first saw this pancake mushroom that my children would try to eat it.

My son, who is 5, probably wouldn’t eat it without at least informing us first.  He’s developed a sense of self-preservation.  My three year old daughter, however, has not yet developed that sense.  This is a good and a bad thing.  When she’s made a bad choice, I can say in a calm voice, “Come here.”  She will grin and come running to me whereupon I pick her up and spank her.  This is a wonderful life lesson, I think.  My son already knows this trick and won’t come near me when he’s done something wrong.  He won’t run either, but that’s a different life lesson.

Anyway, back to the mushroom.  I was thinking about my daughter eating the mushroom and I figured one of two things would happen if she did.

One, it would make her sick and we would have to take her to the hospital and get her stomach pumped.  I’ve seen the contents of her stomach a few times already, so really that’s not too bad.  At least at the hospital, it wouldn’t be all over my shirt.

The second thing that might happen if she ate the pancake mushroom is that she would start hallucinating.  This actually bothers me more than the trip to the hospital because I’m not sure I would know the difference between my children hallucinating and my children not hallucinating.

At any given time in our house, there are between 30 and 50 “babies” that they play with and take care of (it used to be kitty cats, but now they’re babies; is that evolution?).  My kids also talk to people that aren’t there, or at least people that I can’t see.  I’m not talking about imaginary play friends; I’m talking about hour long conversations in their rooms.  My son has learned to cover this up by telling us he is talking to himself.  I don’t even ask my daughter about it.  Toys are almost never played with, but they are often collected in wagons or buckets that get pulled around the house randomly for a game that has constantly changing rules.  At night, the wagons with toys are often left in front of windows.

I’m actually starting to wonder if my kids are collecting toys for a goblin that caught them by leaving pancakes in the yard.  Maybe the goblin tells them what toys he wants and they leave them in front of the window for the goblin to take at night.  Maybe I should ask if the babies are human or goblin.

Be on the lookout for pancakes in your yard.  You never know.

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